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Fonterra knows the future for freight is rail

Fonterra knows the future for freight is rail

The Greens are congratulating Fonterra on the opening of its 'inland port' in Hamilton.

The massive hub is linked by rail to all of the dairy giant's North Island plants, except nearby Te Rapa.

"I wholeheartedly congratulate Fonterra on the opening of their Hamilton inland port. This is a fantastic move," Co-Leader and Transport Spokesperson Jeanette Fitzsimons says.

"Rail is the future for freight in New Zealand and our biggest company clearly knows it.

"The wisdom of this development can be measured simply by Fonterra's own estimate that their move to rail means there will be 45,000 fewer truck movements a year on Waikato roads. That's great news purely from a road safety point of view, but it will also have a positive effect in reducing the company's carbon emissions and dependence on oil.

"The end of cheap oil is an issue agri-business should be taking seriously. The bottom line is that companies that have rail links are going to survive much better than those that don't.

"Other agricultural industries needing to move bulk goods, such forestry and meat, should be paying heed to Fonterra's move. Meeting freight transport challenges of the future will require not only inland ports, but new lines and upgrades and double tracking of existing lines while the energy needed to build them is still relatively cheap," Ms Fitzsimons says.

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